Posted by: portersprospectreport | August 21, 2008

Clay Buchholz Demoted

"And here's your bus ticket to Portland..."

"And here's your bus ticket to Portland..."


Clay Buchholz is the embodiment of why prospecting pitchers is a risky venture.  Last season, Buchholz quickly became a household name after firing a no-hitter on Sept. 1st against the Baltimore Orioles thus evoking visions of him joining Josh Beckett and Daisuke Matsuzaka as a deadly trio of Red Sox hurlers.

What a difference a year makes.   Buchholz has been a major disappointment in ’08 struggling to a 2-9 record with a 6.75 ERA and 41 BB in 71 innings.  Tonight, the Orioles brought the bats out early against Buchholz, hammering him for 5 runs in 2.1 innings.  Immediately following his outing, Buchholz was demoted to AA Portland.

My Spin: It wasn’t but a couple months ago that I was advising people to buy Buchholz’s ’05 RC’s.  Those cards are sure to see a precipitous drop after this move.  Looking deeper into the numbers, Buchholz still struck out nearly 1 batter/inning, but his control and pitch location has been his downfall.  Buchholz is still young, has nasty stuff, but has just felt too much pressure to perform.  While I am less optimistic about his ability to be one of baseball’s best frontline starters, his stuff is much better than he displayed.  If and when his stuff falls, grab it and hold for ’09 or for the ’08 Post-Season (may be in the pen a la Justin Masterson).


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